US had full right to kill bin Laden: Russia

11th May 2011, Comments 0 comments

Russia believes the United States was fully authorised to hunt down and kill Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in an interview released Wednesday.

Lavrov added that Russia also did not have any qualms about the fact that bin Laden had been shot dead despite being unarmed, noting that it was expecting to receive a full account of the US raid at a later date.

"Our position is very simple," RIA Novosti quoted Lavrov as telling the Moskovskie Novosti paper in an interview due to be published Thursday.

"After September 11, 2001, the Security Council adopted a resolution recognising the United States right to self-defence," Lavrov said.

"That right does not presume any limits," Russia's top diplomat added.

The Kremlin hailed bin Laden's elimination on its announcement, linking his terror network to militants staging attacks against Russian forces in the restive North Caucasus region.

But Russian state media have questioned initial conflicts in US accounts of the special operation, with some commentators asking why Washington decided not to publish photographs of bin Laden's body.

The media speculation has focused on why bin Laden had been shot dead instead of being put on trial, but Lavrov stressed that Russia did not have any serious qualms about the Al-Qaeda chief's death.

"I would avoid going into the legalese of this issue," said Lavorv.

"No one in the world has any doubts that bin Laden is the person behind the horrific act of terror of September 11 and an entire series of other terrorist acts," he said.

"The US side is ready to offer its explanation (of what happened), and we will wait."

Russia's parliament in 2006 approved legislation authorising military strikes against suspected terrorists hiding abroad.

© 2011 AFP

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